tv American Perspectives CSPAN May 15, 2010 11:00pm-2:00am EDT
start the markup in the subcommittee of the author listened legislation and this is being done in the midst of a great deal of uncertainty about the future not nasa. we are very fortunate to have the witness is that we have at the table who clearly got to give some direction and we are very fortunate to have the three that will follow on the next panel. this is such an important hearing because there are people . . family that has spaceflight in their jeans that are looking to us to exercise our legislative and appropriations functions in
helping the president and the executive branch chart the course of where america's human space flight program is going from here. there are a lot of us that what given a lot of advice to the president and i think in large part is speech this kennedy space center reflected that we asked to consider strong vision statement in fact we specifically said a vision of going to mars and he did that. we asked that he considered not the cancellation of the constellation program but the restructuring of it and in fact we wanted o have the capability of getting flexibility in the
future and we receive that from his statement. we asked for the extension of the international space station's life instead of it being cut off in 2015 which it was previously going to do. we just are completing it now as 2010. and obviously you don't want to shed it off for years on the road and we received that commitment from the president some of us ask that since there is the hard line all ready for an additional shuttle flight we ask that we consider that and although he didn't announce that in his speech at the kennedy space center it is my hope that that is under consideration and the white house and nasa at this
point. we also askedhe president for the completion, safe completion of the current space shuttle manifest even if it has to be flown in next year and the increases in funding for the other critical parts of nasa's budget including science and aeronautics and earth observation and break through research and development and he has proposed that. but the authorizing and appropriating committees continue to review the president's proposal we here in the legislative branch are going to try to continue to work with the administration to refine his
plan and change some parts of that and it is in that spirit we come here today to take a deep look into the detailed proposal and specfically some of us are going to explore how the plan relates to the national priorities such as education and innovation and security, the implications of the plan including the impact on the national security, the work force, the industrial base and our international posture. and we are going to look at the plan's overall integration in quitting the schedule and the cost. and so then we are going to be looking, mr. sherman, the president's proposal to make a decision on the heavy lift the legal solution of which he sid is as seek as 2015. we would like to speed tht up.
we want to establish the rationale of such a proposal and where the benefits and the challenges lie. thank you. >> thank you, senator nelson. i was going to call on you but i should call on senator vitter because he is ranking on the subcommittee. >> thank you, mr. chairman for this hearing. it is a very important hearing. i agree with my colleague on the subcommittee. and the stakes are very high.ccb i will submit my full opening statement for the record. c s!cc it underscores what i said veryb learly before that iam extremely concerned by this plan and budget submission for nasa by the administration. and i think it is should be very concerning to the entire space community and the american people. my fundamental concerns are number one, i am convinced it will absolutely relinquish our
leadership role in human spac flight certainly for our lifetimes maybe onger if we followed on the proposed path. number two, i repeat senator hutchinson's comments i think complete reliance on the commercial sector for a capability that there is no evidence that can supply in the near term is a bad idea because there is absolutely no evidence that sectr alone can supply this capability in the near term. i want to sport that sector and see that capability row but not put all of our eggs in that basket on that long bet. and number three, i think that we would be in the process if we adopt the plan of fundamentally changing nasa and making it a
research institution almost solely. mr. chairman, you mentioned the broad category of nasa missions and we should remember all of them but we hould start with the core mission which is exploration and human space flight and i really think this proposal is forgetting to a large extent about the absolute record central mission and putting too much emphasis on other ancillary missions. i welcome all of the panels. certainly these distinguished gentlemen and the second panel but mr. chairman i would make one suggestion which is i think the original idea is to have the other three panelists go first so we can get into more of a conversation and get more reaction from the administration officials to air very compelling
testimony in my opinion. we've heard from the administration before several times about the new vision about the budget submission and i'm happy to hear from them again that it would be far mo productive of real discussions and new ideas to have the other three panelists go first to have the administration listen and have all of us respond to that so that would be my suggestion to the chair. i welcome that, and should you become chairman one day you can arrange that. [laughter] senator mueller, but on backend pryor, if you can try to end my favorite governor senator john. if you could keep your remarks to about three minutes. >> thanyou, ranking member which is in for holding th stick to the general bolden and
holdren thank you. i want to work in a collegial way if the had been a station in order to ensure we continue our leadership role in space but i cannot take as optimistic of a view of the president's plan. for nearly 50 years we've been the undisputed leader in space exploration. the proposal by the at a demonstration to what i would call kill the constellation program is areas one and areas five rockets and 200 rollin infield allin to the speculatively called will be in a word devastating. that isn't my word, that is the word used by the commander of apollo 11, 13 and 17. it's going to be devastating for the main reasons. one, the determination of the shuttle we will be for the first time in nerly 50 years for a period of years unable to go into the low earth orbit and put ourselves at the mercy of the russians. second, we are going to dismantle a world-class work force that will be virtually if
not completely impossible to reconstitute. third we are going to relinquish status as leaders and pioneers in space exploration. i do not look forward tohe day i will explain to my children by the chinese are putting their flag on the moon over hours. we've spent nearly $10 billion, $10 billion on the constellation program. and while it isn't a perfect project, it is the wall of the land. and mr. chairman i think it is worth noting that congress has been clear in every authorizing the program twice in 2005 and in 2008 with a democratically controlled congress and republican controlled congress. additional language was specifically included in the 2010 omnibus appropriations bill prohibiting the cancellation of the constellation program and one ing i look forward to discussing in the questions is letters and documents i've received about programs within the constellation already been canceled. to date no laws have changed and
congress hasn't taken action to enact the changes proposed by the administration. we rad in "the wall street journal" even today about the programs being canceled. my view i we need to sta on course with american human space exploration. we need as my olleagues have suggested to extend the shuttle to ensure the u.s. has access to space. we need to expedite the completion of the aeries rocket to ensure access to a low earth orbit and international space stations and finally we need to expedite the development of a heavy lift vehicle and not wait as my colleagues said until 2015. the united states leads the world in space exploration. it's one of the nation's qualities that has been admired around the world. we cannot and should not see to the other countries. if we fail to act now the president and this administration will be remembered for killing america's leadership in space exploration and to me, mr. sherman, that is not acceptable.
thank you. >> thank you. that was absolutely perfect timing. senator brownback. >> thanks, mr. chairman. it is certainly a strong supporter of nasa. chair of the subcommittee some years ago. this is a great topic and three timely that you're putting this together. i look forward to working with you and other members on the space program and these issues. i am a strong supporter of nasa and the commercial space industry and have a steadfast believe the united states needs a vision for the u.s. spac program. i've been a proponent of phasing out the space shuttle and to use the resources for alternative deep space ventures and cutting edge research. with the impending retirement nasa is not assuming a much different role than in the past and i think there is great opportunity to have a space program that leads the world that will be a space program as embedded in opportunity for all. by opening up the commercial
space ensures a strong future for the u.s. and the competitive aerospace industry. mr. sherman you have assembled an exceptional panel of experts. i met with mr. augustine two weeks ago. you couldn't get a better guide to talk about this that can ever ground a long period of time and sees the realities we are in right now. as you mentioned weight budgetary atmosphere and we've got to be able to set our goals and dreams and the saunier within that and i think what he sees is we need to be able to integrate commercial space into doing things into orbit and then nasa can move on from that point. there's a lot of room for discussion and it is an important discussion to have to move forward as a space faring nation and as a nation that needs in space. we can do it but i think it is we do have to be under a different design than what we have been going and i look forward to the discussion of
that design. thank you, mr. chairman. thank you. senator joe johann. >> like most ericans, i grew up with a tremendous amount of admiration for neil armstrong. i thought this man and the astronauts were just enormously courageous individuals. therere, you can only imagine that i would get his testimony a great deal of weight as i think about this hearing and prepare for eight. early on inhis testimony, he said something that to me was very compelling and concerning. he said with regard to president obama's 2010 plan i have yet to find a person in nasa, national
academics industry that had knowledge of the plan prior to the announcement. rumors abound that meter the nasa ad industry or the president's science and technology adviseor knowledgeable about the lan. lack of review normally guarantees there will be overlooked reqirements on the consequences. how could such a chain of defense had been, a plan that was invisible to so many was likely contrived by a very small group in secret who persuaded the president that this was a unique opportunity to put his stamp on the new and innovative program? i believe the president w poorly advised. if in fact that is the way that this was brought about that is ormously concerning where does this come from is the question that i have to ask.
so, it's not only the concern expressed by senator lemieux and others what is happening, if this method and the manner wh we got there. once again, it appears comple lack of transparency and the administration and there is just too much of that. thank you, mr. chairman. >> senator pryor. >> mr. chairman i want to thank you for having this hearing senator hutchinson and your leadership on this and i have to acknowledge senator bill nelson is witut peer when it comes to looking afr nasa's interest and making sure that the various missions of nasa are functioning properly and getting the proper attention here in the congress. mr. chairman i only would have
two questions for the panel when they have a chance to answer and that would be first what is the safest and most economical launch vehicle for restoring nasa's capability to fly a low earth orbit and the international space station and second is what our nasa's plants dget and schedule for deloping and testing heavy lift launch system? i think that the space flight program is at a crossroads and i certainly would look forward to rking through this issue with members of the committee and nasa. thank you. >> thank you. and now dr. holdren, i am very honored to ask you to give your testimony. you're the director of office and science technology policy and have been helpful to me on energy matters and many ther ways and i think you are a terrific appointment and after that, mr. bolden, i will
introduce you. >> chairman rockefeller, hutcheson and members of the committee i certainly am happy to be here today to talk about the administration's strategy for human space exploration activities. i want to be clear at the outset this administration is steadfast in its commitment to space exploration and to the mission of nasa. the president and i recognize space exploration plays a vital role for the nation inadvancing scientific discovery, stimulating technological innovation enhancing our economic strength expanding our horizons ipiring the public and especially our kids about the potential of science and technology and maintaining u.s. leadership internationally. but among the challenges that face this administration when it came to office with the technical and budgetary difficulties of the u.s. human space flight program constellation that we have inherited. to assess the problem nasa stood
up the most open and transparent and participatory federal advisory committee activity relating to space that s ever been undertaken the committee to review the temmins space flight plans. as you know the committee concluded through tat process that the constellation program had become, quote, on executable under any plausible set of assumptions about costs and budget's going forward. the victim f the mismatch between plans andvailable resources exacerbated by decades of under investment new technology and innovation at nasa. and persisting in the pursuit of the increasingly costly program while nonetheless failing to meet its objectives will have the further liability of continuing to shortchange nasa' other activities including as you have mentioned robotic missions, space telescope's, earth observation and aeronautics. it clearly was time to push the
reset button. accordingly, the decision support process engaging nasa and the white house was initiated to flush out a set of options drawn on the augustine committee findings and aiming to maximize the level of exploration and achievement attainable under the realistic budgets for the president's consideration. the result was a set of proposals for nasa's activities anbudget rolled out as a part of the president's fy 2011 budget request on february 1st and a letter dated as a senator nelson has mentioned in the president's speech at the kennedy spac center on april 15th. the key elements in the had fenestration this new strategy for maintaining and expanding u.s. leadership in human space exploration deserve i think at least brief recapitulation here. we want to extend the life of the international space station to at least 2020. in doig so driven significantly increased benefits in science
and technology demonstrations providing a locus and focus for increased u.s. astronaut presence in spae over the decade ahead and maintaining the voluble internatiol partnership that the international space station represents. we want to catalyze the development of and then utilize commercially provided crew and cargo transportation services to the international space station, resulting in what we believe will be more timely and cost-effective. united states capabilities for that purpose than the previous program would have provided. we want to increase nasa's investment in transfer the technology that can expand the reach and reduce the cost of human exploration of deep space. beginning in this way to reverse decades of under attention to that critical need. and we want to pursue a serie of increasingly demanding human exploration missions including the mission to an asteroid by 2025 and orbital mars mission in the mid 20s 30's demonstrating
the key capabilities for a leader mars landing while achieving historic firsts in exploration and discovery. i want to add a word about workforce issues. there are some near-term job losses in store largely as a result of the retirement of the aging space shuttle fleet and early 2011. but that isn't a new problem. the decision to retire the shuttle and the time frame was made and 2004 by the previous administration. based in part on the findings of the columbia investigation board and in part on the need to develop less costly as well as safer technology to get our astronauts into orbit. a dilemma in the area of limited budget is not the high cost of operating the shuttle consumes the money that would be needed to develop its success. the administration recognizes the pain and hardship of job loss in the communities affected and we are taking a number of steps to reduce the impact spirited the promotion of the
expanded commercial space launch industry will create new jobs and other places affected by the national job losses as well as $3 billion that will go into the new r&d on the heavy lift rockets in this program and additional billions in other new technologies. we think it is likely given the additional spending in the new plan that the magnitude of the shuttle related job losses will be smaller and their duration shorter der the new plan than under the old one. buthey will still be a real. there for further steps are being taken by the administration to mitigate those losses including the initiative for the regional economic growth and job creation along the space coast that the president announced on april 15th. in closing let me say that the president and i appreciate the committee's interest in and support for the u.s. human space flight program and the other important missions of nasa. we are convinced the new pla is the best way forward and optistic we can get it done.
i look forward to working with you and others in the congress and to that and i would be happy of course to respond to your questns. thank you. >> thank you. and now the administrator of nasa, mr. charles bolden, jr., who in fact a little over 24 years ago flu in one, senator bill nelson, the floor is yours, sir. >> mr. chairman and members of the mmittee, thank you for the opportunity to appear before you today for additional information about the president's fiscal year 2011 budget request for nasa. following the president's important speech at the nasa kennedy space center in florida. nasa is grateful for the suort and guidance received from this committee through the years and look forward to working with you to implement the president's bold new direction for the agency. given that you have my detailed written statement i wl try to keep my remarks very brief this afternoon so that i have time for questions. but first i would like to knowledge the incredible contributions of my to astronaut
colleagues, norm augustine will be on the second panel. both kneal and gina, first and last humans to setoot on the moon have dedicated their lives to the challenging often unforgiving pursuit of space exploration and in doing so improved the quality-of-life in america and inspired the next generation. and they continue to contribute by remaining engaged and providing their remarks on today's important topic of the future of human space flight. i appreciate their thoughts and ideas and it is very beneficial to have had the opportunity to discuss their concerns over the past three weeks ando present them with the faeroe briefing on the plans for america's future in human sce flight and exploration in a two-hour briefing last week and attempt to release some of their concerns. however, reasonable people can disagree and so i must respectfully disagree with some of the remarks from the first panel in their prepared remarks.
the president's fiscal year 2011 buet request is good for nasa because it sets the agency on a sustainable path that is in our nation's interest. durg his visit, the president or ticketed a strong commitment to nasa's mission and future of u.s. human spaceflight exploration. the president also outlined an ambitious effort to foster the development of groundbreaking technology, increasing the numbers, scope and the pace of manned and unmanned space missions, make him and space flight safer and more efficient and help create thousands of new jobs. the president has laid out the goals and the strategies for this edition which includes a sequence of deep space destinations for human missions progressing step by step for the test flights early in the deca of the vehicles capable of supporting exploration beyond low earth orbit as commissions to and astrid by 2025 and his mission to orbit mars and return
safely to earth by the mid 2013 s. with respect to the role of heavy let in the future of human spaceflight architecture, the fiscal year 2011 budget request includes funds for nasa to conduct and or research and to let and analysis necessary to make an informed decision on a heavy lift launch vehicle no later than 2015. on may 3rd nasa issued a request for information seeking general information regarding potential launch or space transportation aritecture that will be used for planning and acquisition strategy development for the current heavy lift planning activities. regarding the plan for the restructured the president directed me that nasa build on the work already completed on the golan in a capsule and focus the efforts to provide a simple more efficient is the design that would provide a skate from the space station and serve as the technical foundation for advanced spacecraft to be used in future deep space mission.
this approach also will preserve a number of critical high-tech industry jobs and disciplines needed for the future deep space explation program. we have put together a formulation team cluding headquarters and personnel to develop a baseline approach that meets these requirements balanced with other priorities proposed in the president's 2011 budget request. this team will report to me within three weeks on how best to meet the requirements. dr. holdren all the talk about the work force initiative so i won't cover that but i will say the task force in june that i co-chair with the secretary of commerce will also explore future work force and economic development activities that could be undertaken for aerospace communities and other states as appropriate and we hold the first meeting of that task force this morning. nasa expects to submit a revised 2011 budget request to congress in the near future the will identify funding requirements for the restructured oelwein and
crew capsule as well as requirements for the work force transition. finally, regarding the international space station for all in furthering the research technology and innovation. the orbiting lab represent a unique capability which the united states and partner nations can use to conduct a wide variety of research and biology, chemistry, physics and engineering fields that will help us better understand how to keep astronauts healthy and productive on the long duration space missions. iss can and will play a role in the technology demonstrations and engineering research associate with exploration. tester chairman, in conclusion, americans and people worldwide have turned to nasa for inspiration through history. our work gives people the opportunity to imagine what is possible and we at nasa get to turn the dreams into achievements for all humankind. this budget gives nasa a roa map to even more historical
achievement as it spurs innovation come employs americans fulfilling jobs and engages people would not the world as we enter an exciting era in space. i think you again for your support and that of this committee. i would be pleased to respond to any questions you or other members of the committee may have. >> thank you very much. director holdren. i will ask the questions i hope each of you will answer. a variety of priorities have been sugested and i suggested in my opening statement what was what we did is not always by definition doesn't have to be what we always continue to do. i did, hoever, heavily mention human space flight. but dr. holdren, and then start with you, mr. administrator, how would you list if you were looking at the future the budget
requirements and the need of the tion and the world, the priorities of nasa? >> mr. chairman, as i have already indicated, i think that nasa has a number of import responsibilities and areas of activity and we have to figure out within the constraints of the limited budget how to edit and all of the most important ones. clearly, human space exploration is an important element for the reasons i mentioned at the beginning of my testimony and for others we could elaborate. it has been and will continue to be an inspiration to every new generation of american young people bringing more of them into science, math and engineering, strengthening the economy, enabling us to address a wide variety of other issues and it is very important to the most fundamental of human drives which is to understand and explore the universe around it. so at the same time we have to
maintain the earth observation activities of nasa. we have to maintainhe aeronautics activities of nasa include in next to the contributions to the air traffic control system to the green aviation and more. we have to maintain the contributions of nasa to the mullen human exploration in the sense of the space telescope and the sense of robotic missis. is not possible to say we can dispense with any of these and i believe under the president's plan we can indeed nurture all of them in ways that will move us forward as a society. >> so, if i am talking about medical and scientific and other kinds of research those would fall somewhere below? >> no, talking about research, we need to do more research and understand our place in the universe. we need to do more fundamental science using the capabilities of nasa and we need to use the capabilities of nasa to do more
advanced development some of which will be useful directly in the exploration program and much of which will spin off into immensely valuable economic conditions across our society. what i'm saying is we need to maintain of the major functions in nasa and i am saying that we believe we can do it with the budget the president proposed for fy 11 and going forward. >> thank you. mr. chairman,i ron ackley i woke up early this morning and i went on line and i listened to the white house tapes from november 21st, 1962, and was a heated discussion between president john kennedy and nasa administrator james webb who was a marina and a pilot. i didn't know that until this morning. but the discussion was about he question you just asked and president kennedy asked the administrator web the lunar landing the top priority for
nasa, an administrator webb said know it's science, technology development, and for quit some time they went back and forth are doing about. it's easy for me to answer the question top priority for nasa in my estimation is human spaceflight development and pushing us beyond the bond of the low earth orbit. everything else is second. and it's only through the execution of the human space flight that we can open up the avenues of making it available to do research and development. it is the desire to go to places like mars that will draw on people, companies run the company, academia if we can get them t money to defend the capabilities that will allow us to go places like that. short owanting to send humans beyond the low earth orbit we have a number of other federal agencies that can do my job. so that is a personal -- to last
me a personal question and i give you a personal opinion. >> i appreciate it and tnk you. senator hutchinson. >> thank you. i listened to both of you and you have focused on the science and going beyond the low earth orbit as the priorities and i agree with you. in fact, general bolden, in your testimony come to talk about the use of the space station but you talk about what we can learn to make it healthier and better for astronauts and others to go into space which i think is important, but there is also the vast field medical technology that we have aready gained immensely from space exploration and there's more that is going on right now. nasa and nih have a memorandum
of understanding. the diagnosis of heart, blood, long and disease, cell and organ as an aging reducing the be the limiof new biomedical edging the the eckert imaging and microgravity conditions. the space station is a key component of the research dr. holdren, your championing an i know general bolden, you also say it is part of your focus and yet we can't have a space station that will be productive but will be stable that we can be sure what fulfill the 10 billion-dollar investment that's already been made in tat vehicle without the assurance we are to get people out there that we can have the cargo that might be needed in
the later years because it has been extended. but i come back to the question if you don't look at the stable source if you're getting people there how can ou say that the science is going to be orthe mission and the goal of science and productivity is going to be achieved? that's my concern. if the soyuz is out of pocket or they raised their rates because it is the only means we have so it that it is so prohibitive and we could be cleaning the same money in our alana capabilities and we learn from thatuch more than just stateon the soyuz, or if we have blow up in the commercial companies we are not able to fulfill the contract,
they are on tested, you are putting all of our dreams and hopes and taxpayer dollars into the commercial and investment. what are you going to do if there are overruns which there already are? are you intending to have the taxpayers then have no choice but to go forward and spend more money? why not do it in a tried and true fin dee dee to prevent 40 record entity which is nasa, why have you gone on this attack when you're putting so much more emphasis on the untested sources to assure the space station will be utilized to the full potential. >> senator, if i may say there is only one untested source and it's not untested in the two competitors right now in the program it is a space -- spacex.
they've flown pegasus and another number of spacecraft for many of years. we have flown, the of flown to orbit. they know what they are doing. orbital was the subprimalon the system we just had an incredible success added white sand so if i want to say why do i have confidence i have confidence in them because they demonstrated ability to put things in spae when you talk about exploration and research on the space station i could not agree more. i am very confident and comfortable however with my partners, the russians, because they have the best record of safety and reliability in terms of access to space. they've now flown i think 90 missions without an accident or loss of life. there is no other person, there is no other source of access to the low earth orbit that can mix
the record. the next thing i ill say is as good as in trivia i defy anyone who says that american industry is not as good or better than they are. i have to be confident orbital spacex, douglas not even around anymore, boeing, the other manufacturers can match if not exceed that of intermedia and i am just confident american industry is better than the russian industry and i happy withhat the russians do. >> the one comment i want to do to that is remind folks that all of the rockets and al of the spacecraft we've been using from the beginning of the era have been built by the private sector. wh we are talking to this changing the acquisition model. >> but here is the key. what i was going to say it is not that we won't rely on ivate contractors. of course we will but it will be
under the auspices a control of nasa and their tried and true 40 years of experience. not to defend than $6 billion, which is what is in the president's proposal and just saying you go to this without all of the other aspects, the training, testing, the mission control. there is so much more than just building the rocket or building the half of the zero ryan. it has to fit together in what my concern is you or terminating a constellation in the budget you've got to $.5 billion to terminate. that's the terminatn and there are reports all over the place you are terminating contracts or making it the central that they self terminate. and for 2.5 billion we could
>> senator nelson. >> senator hutchison i think that is a good point. space is a very unforgiving kind of environment, and nasa has always run the programs beg built by contractors, not contractors running the programs with oversight by nasa. that is a new way of doing business dr. holdren. needless to say, there are some people who question the wisdom of that, but the fact is that, if it doesn't work or if it gets extended way out, then we don't have a backup system safe for our partners, the russians. but they have a limited
capability of getting stuff up and back with the size of the soyuz. i want to get into-- i want to get into the normal decision-making process, because normally what happens is nasa sends to the office of management and budget by november their budgets, their suggested budget, and normally omb then send it, their iterations, back to nasa for nasa's commentary, but that didn't happen this year. instead, the pass back from omb came right at the time of e announcement of the president. and as you go, the president had to go down to the kenneday space center ensign change some things because of the mistakes that we made in the rollout, which unfairly characterized the
president as an opponent of human spaceflight, which the senator knows him to be an avid proponent. so, dr. holdren i want to ask u, when omb came back, did oab consult you in the fal determinations of the nasa budget? when i sa you, i am talking about your organization. >> the answer to that in brief is yes, absolutely, but let me answer the question in a little more detail. as you know senator nelson this was not an ordinary year. it was the year in which a determination was made after receipt of the augustine report that really fundamental changes in the priorities and the structure of nasa's's human spaceflight program we are going
to be necessary and of necessity, the process of figuring out what those would be had to be integrated with the fy2011 budget process. and that is the way it was done. there have been a number of suggestions, including one that we heard in one of the opening statements, that neither i nor the nasa administrator was involved in this process. i can assure you that the president's decision in this manner was not hasty, and it was not lacking in input from a wide range of well-informed advisers. >> let me inteupt you because i am down unlimited time here. dr. holdren,when did the nasa administrator, when was he consulted in the period of two weeks before the rollout of the budget? >> senator, i do not want to get into the internal pre-decisional deliberations and have-- how they took place in detail.
you and i both know that i can do that. >> okay, but let me ask you this. let me ask you this. were any of the center directors and nsa consulted? >> senator nelson, may i answer the question because if it is possible, because i think i know the answer better than dr. holdren in this particular case because-- i became the nasa administrator in july. beginning in august, there was a very smart young man who is sitting behind you on your right, who was my brain, my strategic brain by the name of tom clements and then he will tell you beginning in august, we had periodic, a series of strategic planning meetings among the senior leadership of nahich included the associate administrators and everything in nasa. this went on for a number of months, and during that period
of time, because i am a marine, and i include the space shuttle where you know we do disasr training, we discussed every potential outcome of the budget and i spent probably a month where i asked everybody to list the worst-case scenario, which was you know, what happens if everything goes away and we get nothing and we have to start from scratch. we knew that would not be good, but we determined that we in nassau,ecause we know how to do thing, we could recover from map. senator directors, senior leadership of nasa have been involved in the deliberations that led to our submission of our budget proposal since august. as dr. holdren has said, because augustine, the results from the augustine committee were delayed from when we thought they would come, and we all found ourselves
very late in the process a doing things and as i have said, do most of you when i've come to talk to you, i accept the blame. i am six months behind, conservatively, where i would have than in a normal budget process. we would have had discussions with members and their staff back in the fall. we couldn't do that because augustine came out and we went back to the drawing board again and continued to discuss. i provided lots of input to the president over a period of time. as i have said before, it is my budget. it is my plan, and i am here to defend it as i think it is the right thing for us to do. >> i would like to say one more thing with my permission. the president heard from a lot of people in this process. he heard from me. he heard from administrator bolden and senator nelson he heard from you.
that doesn't mean that he took everybody's adve. but he did hear it and he waited , and then as presidents must he arrived at a position that balance all of the relevant considerations and in my own view, it is out of that process he got to the rest of the most balanced program for nasa, including its human spaceflight dimension that the country can afford. >> thank you senator nelson. senator vitter. >> thankou mr. chairman. mr. bolden, as you know a lot of our concerns are about the capability ofhe commerci sector to do what we are asking them to do on-time, on budget but essentially all our eggs in that basket. it was reported to me that in the conference call with . armstrong, and captain cernan last week i think he referred to the call itself, for
a couple of hours. you told them that you would quote, do whatever it would take ," mack to make commercial work including quote, bailing them out, even if that would mean a bigger bailout ben chrysler and gm blasco what did you mean by that? >> i'm not sure i said that senator. i'm not sure what-- who was in the room but as i have always said i will do everything in my power to facilitate the success of the commercial entities in access to orbit. i have to have that. the defense has to have it and our intelligence community has to have it work of the budget today does not allow me to continue to build and operate in lower orbit if i want to go explore. the contingency that i continue-- i am a. i have to looat the possibility that the commercial sector may have difficulty, and
we will do everything in my power to facilitate their success. that is what i meant when i said anhing. >> mr. bolden what i have read is a lot more specific and different than what you just said. did you say, did you use the sort of language i used? >> i don't remember using the sort of language you used. i don't remember that. this was just days ago. >> it had quite an impact on other folks in the conversation, and it raises my concerns at least. >> senator,. >> people talk about conversations i have had and i am involved in the conversation and i've tell you what i said. i am not sure who else was in the room. i know who was in the room with me and i'd know who was on the line with jan and neal. >> okay. >> i'm talking about direct participants who were taking notes, but anyway.
as we sit here, do you think the timetable and the budget for that commercial program, do you personally think that is likely to stay on timetable and on budget? >> i think we are going to stay pretty much on timetable. if we go exactly the way that the schedule is laid out right now, it will be the first time in the history of any endeavor involving faith that everybody has made it on time. i expect they will have technical difficulties and we will help them through them. they have already had technical difficulties as we do, and we work through them. >> in light of the continuation of o'ryan, why is it tha nasa is taking actions which would constrain the funding of the program by a shift thing the termination liability onto the program which is not the norm? i understand that is occurring in this case. that is not the norm and there has been no decision by congress
in terms of funding. >> senator termination liability is a factor that is in the contract of every supplier that nasa uses. it always has been. i just reminded them to read their contracts. >> did you send a letter to the hubble contractors, to the webb telescope contractors? did you send a letter to then. >> we didn't have to send a letter to the hubble contractors because the delivered without any problems and in terms of james www.we continue to be constantly exercising oversight over them because i think it's all of you know it has been a fiscal challenge for us and it remains a fiscal challenge. >> but are the termination liabilities being shifted onto the program? it is my understanding that they are, which is not normal procedure. it is my understanng that this is the case because of the administration as opposed to other.
>> the responsibility for termination liability lies with the company and that is contractual. that is not something that we change. i can't change it because it is in the contract. now, where the money lies. >> what other contractors did you send this letter to? >> we had it sent to the prime contractors of the constellation program. >> what other program contractors did you send it to? >> we didn't have to send it to anybody because we didn't have any programs that send something to us saying that they were concerned about termination liability. >> that their other programs and government that are going to the same thing right now for the same reason. >> the risk decision lies with the company and if it is a publicly traded company it lies with the board of directors, and in that particular case they have to decide whether they are going to put the money in the bank or whether they are going to spend it on people and
things. it is a risk decision that they have to make. normally, when things are going along well, compani don't worry about it because they assume they are going to be no problems but that is a risk that the company decides, the level of risk they are going to take and i think if you talk to any business they will tell you the same thing. >mr. chairman if i could have one final question for mr. holder in. you talked about the budget constraints, which are certainly clear and obvious. but, the bottom line is still that this budget is an extra $6 billion over five years, and it is not going primarily to exploration. maybe 1 billion is and that is mostly research within that program, so it is a major increase going elsewhere. so isn't it true that, with tho significantly increased resources, certainly other this could have been done to focus more immediately on
existing programs and human spaceflight? >> it is always true that one can make different choices about allocation. we think we made the best choices about allocation available to us under the circumstances. the decision to invest more in research and development, in game-changing technologies common technologies that can ultimately take us faster and farther as opposed to continuing to invest in existing programs which were already way over budget and behind schedule was a very conscious decision, to invest in what abari's been the sources of u.s. leadership. the sourc of u.s. leadership has always been advanced technology and the augustine committee's report in our own conclusion was that nasa had been under investing in advanced technologies will ultimate need to continue to lead, to go faster and farther in space. we couldn't continue to invest and neal program at the levels that it was requiring and invest
in these other possibilities. >> senator if i may add one thing and i suggest you ask norm when he comes in on the panel because he will tell you, it was a matter of taking $6 billion in spreading it over five years for investments in technology development, aeronautics, science and commercial or tke a nap 6 million-dollar chunk and putting it in oneyear for the constellation program. not knowing how you would get to the next year, and norm augustine will tell you that. his recommendation was okay let's take $3 billion and that was one of the options that ty offered. the fiscal times dictated to me, my fiscal responsibility to the president was to advise him that it would need much smarter to take $6 billion in instead of putting it in one year of trying to cch constellation up and then wondering where i was going to get the $6 billion the next
year, let's spread it over five years, let's get a grip on our technology development, let's restore some prominence to science and aeronautics, and people are happy. you can't find anybody and scientists always argue about priorities but it is fine to-- hard tofind somebody in the community who will not tell you this is an incredible budget for them. you can't find a university president who will n tell you this is a great budget for them because they now-- i just came from mit at harvard. >> i don't want her and talk to you but you are going to have to learn time limits. keeping it reef. otherwise you eat up senators time and they don't like that, and then they don't go for what you want. [laughter] >> yes, sir.
>> general bolted after the last shuttle flight it will be the last one? >> that is our whole. >> assuming that is what happens what will be the next nasa mission to lower earth orbit? >> the next nasa mission to lower earth orbit wi be the next soyuz that launches carrying a crew to the international space station and a six-month anchoman. >> what will be the next nasa mission that is powered with a nasa rocket? >> i am not trying to be cute, the next nasa mission will be flown on a commercial rocket just as the shuttle . it will be a commercial rocket that we least instead of. >> which rocket? >> the first one will be spacex. it will be falcon nine. and then lay to them is-- 20 levin early 2012 will be-- and
then there will be a sequence of demonstration flights that will allow us to take them to the point where they work on contract. right now everything is there a dime. i gave them $250 million apiece and they have to demonstrate. >> are those rockets taking us to the international space station in 2011? >> no, no sir. the first timee will have a commercial rocket take us to the international space international station with a crew will probably about 2015. >> okay. five years from now, your estimation is the commercial rocket will be available to take us to low earth orbit? >> yes, sir. >> is that why are you saying the 2015 or the president articulated 2015? >> it had no connection with that. >> why are we waiting until 2015? >> we are not waiting. i asked the president to
challenge me and i asked the president to give me a deadline of no later than 2015. originally it was in 2015. if i have to wait until 2015 to make a decision that prolongs the amount of time before i can start building. if i could give it to them tomorrow i would. i can't. i can't give him a recommendation on the architecture, because i am not smart enough. >> what about that aries rockets? >> do you aries is a great rocca but i'm not sure that is the most cost-effective. i'm not sure that we have the technology that we can sustain the technology that is going into areas right now. i'm not sure we want to use solid rocket boosters. because i am trying to find a rocket that od, the intelligence community and nasa can use and that may not need a solid rocket motor. that maybe loctite locked hydrogen. >> how much money ever spent on
the aries rockets so far? >> on theconstellation program we have spent about $9 billion over the last five or six years, and none of it, not a dime of it has been wasted. >> are you going to be able to use the money we have spent as opposed to continuing the rockets andevelopment? >> i'm going to continue to use the product came about from that $9 billion expenditure. some rovers that have been developed as a part of the program that now i don't need to put permanent habitats on them and, robots that we worked with genal motors and a space agreement that we call a dterous robot that can throw a baseball. >> my time is limited so i want to get back to the rocket issue. if we a party invested billions of dollars in this heavy lift technology? >> no, sir. >> how much have we invested in the aries rocket? >> the only rocket that we hav invested insofar has been aries one because the investment and
aries one, it reducethe amount of money you have to pay for the aries five rocket. >> how much involved in that? >> let me, i will have to bring it back to you for the record because i can break out the 9 billion among the different components of the constellation program. >> say that again. >> i can't for you right now at this table break out the different components, the amount we have spent on the different components of the constellatio program. >> is that something you it's a bit for us? >> yes, sir. we will get that for the record. >> let me quickly because my ti is short ask you about termination. are you telling vendors right now that you are terminating the constellation program? >> no, i am not. they know the 2011 budget, the president's 20 levin budget proposal the language is very explicit. calls for termination of the constellation program. >> you understand the lava land right now. >> i abide by the lava lamp right now and we are not
termining anything. i can't do that lawfully. >> that is my time mr. chairman. thank you. >> thanks mr. chairman. i nt to follow up on what senator lemieux was asking on commercial spaceflight because this is new information to me. nasa is going to be paying for initial flights in late 2011 by spacex on was the two vehicles you are saying? falcon nine and mentor is to? >> falcon nine in taurus who are the first to commercial vehicles. >> what does nasa pay for? >> right now nasa pays $250 million to spacex and orbital as part of the act agreement. that was to give . . them seed money so that they could go off and develop commercial capability. that is why, that is all. >> but they are going to want
something in late 2011? >> that will be the first flight that they will fly for me. falcon nine will actually launch the end of this month or early june but that is not for me. thatis in my databank. >> what will they fly for you in late 2011? >> it is a demonstration to demonstrate that they can get the vehicle to lower earth orbit when it separates the dragon module they have to fly, navigate themselves to the international space station, get to a point where they can stop and i can take it and reverse its of a of a number of demonstration flights they have to fly so i've. >> that will be the first demonstration flight that they will be doing in late 2011? >> let me back and get it for the record because ther are a serieof flights they have to fly and i want to make sure i'm giving youaccurate information because ea flight has for a different purpose. it is an incremental
progression. >> how many flights are they going to be flying before 2015 which is when you send them up to the station? >> let me get that for the records there because i don't want to give you-- and it is the same for orbital. each has a certain number of flights they fly and under the program that i paid for with the $250 million, and then they go into a resupply but that is the contract. so, for that they make money every time they deliver something into orbit. i will give you the data on the specific flights. >> i think for the chairman and for me and i think the whole committee the more specific you are on this because obviously people have a lot of questions about how we going to stand up this new capacity and i want to make sure ll be. >> manned flights i late 2011 by spacex? >> no. it is cargo only. we have got a long way to go.
we have a long way to go and when i say a long way to go, they have got to demonstrate their ability to get cargo into orbit safely. >> and an unmanned vehicle. >> there are several flights. >> when is your year marker for when they will have a man space flight before it goes to the station? >> my target is for them to fly their feast-- first crew flight in 2015. >> the curt first crew flight. the first one will go to the space station in 2015? okay. i am struck by the augustine report and i am a fan of norm augustine. i've known him for some years and i just think he is a really solid americabut i am troubled about, it feels like w are losing control. it feels like we are losing leadership in the man space arena. and yet i gather from his data,
he says there is not another way for us to continue human spaceflight on the budget he bieves we are willing to do. is this strictly a dollars and cents issue than? >> senator, everything is a dollar and cents issue, and you know you buy it by the pound. if we want to explore beyond lower authority, we have to revamp the responsibility for day-to-day operations. i have to free myself of the 2 billion-dollar annual infrastructure cost. it is there. if i don't fly a single shuttle mission i paid-- i've got to be able to free myself of that so i can go beyond lower earth orbit and that is the importance of the commercial entities and providing transportation. >> my time is about up. is there any other way r us to
continue an aggressive human space flight program with the budgetary dollars you are talking about other than the one you have prescribed? >> senator we will continue an aggressive human spaceflight program because i just selected a group of astronauts this past year and i have a number of them who i'm trained to fly on the international space station right now through 2015 and we are getting ready to make subsequent crew assignments to flight three 20/20 so we do not intend to stop going to space. senator, we have got a lot of work to be done on the international space station. >> the russians are going to card is is back-and-forth. >> senator the rssians have been carting us back and forth for years. >> i understand that. i am asking you.blank, is there another way for us to be able to continue and it rests of human spaceflight program other than the one you webb outlined here within the budget?
see the program of record constellation will not enable me to do what i told you i want to do. >> thanks chairman. >> thank you senator brownback. i have one short question. ihink senator nelson has a question and senator hutchison. >> i've gotabout 20 more, but i really don't want to make the astronauts and mr. augustine keep waiting, so i am really so sorry because this is so important. >> i no, i know. i am going to ask one short question. this is all to me actually very interesting, and of putting together of this was very difficult. there was a lot of kind kind of combativeness and suspicion. you heard some of the comments, the secret society formation of a plan, which norm augustine i guess he can talk about.
how we join that group. but in my mind, frankly there is a sense of not eating settled or comfortable with where we have been going. and, part of that is based upon the history of the mystery and the mysticism and the culture and the romance in a nse of 1962 and thereafter. america needs to catch up in the world. we are behind in virtually evything we do, telecommunications to science technology, engineering and math, so let me take science, technology engineering and math and ask one question. ..
all of what you are talking about will become less and less possible, meshes attach themselves to -- to what nasa does. so i notice in the budget that what you have -- what i would call inspiring the next generation, it used to be you just mention the name john glenn or the two astronauts which will come out very shortly, or yourself, -- those were the good old days, senator. >> there's a new kind of a hunger in the new generation. the head of the discovery channel was here last week.
and told us that more young people of their own volition watch the discovery channel and all of its uncovering of the mysteries of science and all the rest of the technologies than watch espn. and i assume, you know, other cable channels. fascinating, powerful statement. a young generation waiting to be inspired of their own choice reaching out to be inspired by products which happen to be there. so you have something called education budget. and you're putting less than 1% of nasa's budget into what i call education, which i look upon as future generations waiting to participate in ventures. can you respond? participate in ventures. can you respond?
>> yes, sir. i'm glad you asked the question. nasa has nasa has 3,121st robotics teams we sponsor. more than any other federal agencies and any other company in the world. if you don't know about the first robotics i recommend you go. i went to the international championships. it inspires kids. we have something on the international space station right now called this year's coverage as round balls produced at the mit that up until now for about i want to say since 2006 have been flying around inside the space station programs by college students doing research with the summer of inovation a program that we are rolling out and we just rolled out the first award monday in boston with the farepak track. we are going to extend the opportunity to middle school students to program a skier or set spheres that will fly around the international space station. to me that is inspirational. i don't care what anybody says.
the kid doesn't have to become an astronaut. >> mr. chairman, the president and i as well as administrator bolden agree about the priority we have to give to science technology engineering and math education. the president ruled out last november educate enough eight initiative based on partnerships including the discovery channel, the discovery channel and time warner cable combiningto offer to our softer 70 feet to after-school program and free of commercials every day on cable channels on the country over half a billion dollars pledged in money and kind support from industry and nations to help us improve education in the country. administrator bolden, this week as part of the national laboratory day that is all about improving the science and engineering labs available in every middle school and high school in this country johanns dee dee de nasa as part of an engagement at the nsf,
department of energy and department of education. we are doing a lot in that domain. the president is absolutely ecstatic about what we are getting done and we couldn't agree with you more but the things are all related. nasa's success, nsf success linked to t success of the education programs we promote to the white house and department of education and it's all coming together. >> senator nelson. >> thank you, mr. chairman. dr. bolden, did you have discussions with the department of defense upon the effect of the cancellation solid rocket motor program? >> musette i think dr. bolden. >> we had partners in the defense and i have to say in all honesty the department of defense is still looking at it. those initial conversations communicated there woulbe an
impact but it didn't appear to be in on manageable impact. and those considerations are going on and i understand even as we speak. but i continue to believe those -- >> those considerations are going on as you speak about what a surprise you that there is a complete record in front of the senate armed services committee by general shelton to become chiln, one of the generals charged with the strategic defense of the country as well as the other general, general cartwright the vice-chairman of the joint chiefs who has his portfolio of the strategic defense that in fact the dod was absolutely shocked that nasa suddenly came up with this program but to cancel the testing on the solid rocket motor since nasa has 70% of the
industrial base of the solid rocket motors of which the remainder the defense department is absolutely reliant upon. does that surprise you? >> first of all, senator, the dod is a big place and we didn't talk to everybody. we are aware there is going to be an impact. the dod obviously has an interest in this domain. i think the dod is probably capable of supporting its interest in the domain of the wait might mean higher costs per uni in acquiring the solids the need. i am not saying there is no issue and i am not surprised a variety of analysis exist in the department but i believe there will be a solution to that issue going forward. >> dr. holdren, did you have a discussion with administrator bolden within the week before the budget was rolled out to let himknow what the final
president's proposal was going to be? >> you say within the week. we certainly have it within two weeks. it was well within the last weekend as we did. >> so, general, you knew what the president's proposal was going to be even though you were in israel? >> i actually found out -- i think i found out before i went to israel. i was in israel the week before the rollout and i came back that thursday night but we had already met on the budget the week before. >> all right. general, can you tell me is there a discussion going on within the nasa as you are considering adding one more shuttle flight to the manifest? >> the discussion has gone all the way up. i expressed -- i have told people that there is a potential
i would like to fly with the launch on the missions and would be for logistics reasons and have nothing to do with jobs or anything else. it's just if i have a spare supplies i can get on the international space staton i would like to take every opportunity to do that. it is not an easy decisions though because i would have no want on the vehicle to back it up and that isn't trivial the decision to do that. >> but you do have the plans that what the worst happen on assets so that the crew could take safe refuge in the isf? >> senator, we have contingency plans to include what happens to the crew if they can't get to the isf because everybody -- one of the things i hate is a pretty assumes you get to the international space station. that is a long way away. if you have a problem as yo remember when part of the back end of the order comes off you don't get to the isf so that is
one of the reasons i am the -- i don't want that to happen and it is not a trivial decision. >> what would be the cost of continued aeries testing? >> i will get you the numbers but it is in the neighborhood of 1 billion to 1.6 billion the variegation comes because if you're testing and aeries vehicle and the plan is that it will more into the aeries five the news spread the cost across the vehicles. volume doing is applying the aeries one test so i can keep people working it goes to 1.6 billion because there's nothing else to help it absorb thecost so it all goes to aeries and that is why in the discusions i have said as much as i am a tester i cannot ask any more to allow me to test a aeries vehicle if there is
something ee i can use to get the same test of an oelwein in his vehicle done. >> speaking of zero ryan, and i know you want me to quit my questioning -- speaking of orion, why do we want a half-baked o'ryan the? >> what we want is an incrementally developed model that can take people beyond the lower orbit. but i don't want to do in any module is settle on the design and configuration in 2010 when i know the first time i'm going to send a human beyond the low earth orbit at the earliest is 2020. so if i settle on a vehicle today, flight in 2013 and the crew has to live with the same vehicle and configuration for sev more years they will fly on the vehicle 7-years-old one.
i don't want the o'ryan that will go to the moon and mars and an asteroid i don't want the final configuration internally made until as close as possible to the flight. >> then why have a half-baked one? why not rely on the soyuz? >> no senator, i need to have my people, amrican industry continue to work on spacecraft otherwise we lose the challenge. also it's important for the national pride and other things we have an american-built vehicle that is talked to the international space station and i can do tat with the foundational vehicle that will be the basis for what will take beyond the low earth orbit. >> we have reached the point now we have onl time for senator warner to lesol plea just one question. to externals and dr. augustine
iting we have not treated them fairly on the other hand we had just one and aalf rounds of questions. the subject is that interesting and controversy also i don't apologize for that. senator warner. >> thank you and let me say this as a nice break from derivatives and high-frequency trading and other things we've been dealing with on the floorand also follow up quickly realizing my time is short you mentioned the educational foundation. i do think theres interesting opportunities to leverage. i think that the prize foundation and the kind of energy that genered. ayaan stand i missed some of the earlier what conversations, will the because of this great possibilities and opportunities
as the facility in virginia but one thing i aminterested in assuming for a moment that commercialization moves forward and part of the challenge of nasa will be to ensure as i think earlier questions pointed out the safety of the commercial missions up to the isf. have you thought through how you set the standards particularly in the commercial context and is there some analogy we could draw from that working with the faa on cutting the safety standards amount commercial aircraft that we could perhaps you to place again? >> senator, we thought it through very seriously and continue to think it through and i have a group right now that is going to report to me on something i call insight and oversight. senator rockefeller talked about
we can't continue to do things the way we do. we have too many boards and panels and oversight committees in nasa and i have asked our folks to find a way we can get back to something reasonable. we don't need all the oversight committees that we have. that is costly and consumes time to read a great example of the type of oversight i would like to have is the relationship with russians. they do a flight before every flight to the two flight readiness review just like we do with the shuttle. i have people from space operations at moscow that the flight readiness review. they are a member of the team when the russians have their dynamic reentries in the last couple of years while we were not a part of the engineering investigation we got all of the data on the mishaps and learned what had happened and we learned what they did to correct so i will use that as a model.
the disadvantage to commercial is they don't have the experience that soyuz has. we have 90 successful missions on soyuz so that makes me a lot more comfortable with them than an upstart company and commercial development. but i willmake them successful because i will stablish standards and they are looking at them now to make sure we are not being unreasonable. as we thought about it a lot. >> will point out the previous experience nasa langley with commercial litigation there may be less informed -- >> the next generation air transport system we were talking about human spaceflight but that is incredle. the langley, the ames research center, we are intimately involved in trying to make avtion, general aviation and commercial aviation flights safer and more efficient for every one around the world, and next-gen -- >> lessons there could be implemented -- sprick of other questions for the record. >> you can submit this for the record, great.
i want to thank you gentlemen. this is an interesting panel that's taken a long time but that's beuse i think that there is uncertainty and as i have questions about nasa i always have and still do what we are working our way towards something and there are conflicting points of view. some people just simply want it this way and others on it that way and some are trying to find a third way and i guess i am in that categor in any event, i thank you, dr. holdren, for being here and also to you, general, for being here. thank you both. we will now be in recess for 30 seconds. [laughter]
>> i want order in this hearing room. and j.j., you will enforce it. somebody turn the lights back on, too. or maybe not. i want to welcome mr. neil armstrong, commander of apollo 11. captain and commander of apollo 17. norman augustine, who i have known for many years, and who is the chairman of the ree view of the u.s. human space flight plan committee. we will start with you, mr. armstrong. pull that up and turn the button on. nope. >> how about that? >> that's good. >> mr. chairman, members of the committee, i want to express my sincere appreciation for being invited to present the views on nasa's new plan for human space
flight. new non-classified national program concepts are typically accompanied by substantial review and debate in a number of venues. that process is occasionally frustrating, but it assures that all the major issues, performance, cost, funding, safety, scheduling and so forth, will be examined in some detail prior to a public proposal. after the tragic loss of columbia and its crew, the chairman of the columbia accident investigation board noted that nasa needed a long-term strategic guiding vision. president bush, after reflection, proposed such a vision. finish the international space station, return to the moon,
establish a permanent presence there, and venture on ward toward mars. as this committee well knows, that vision was analyzed, debated, and improved on with congress for nearly two years. you then concluded nearly unanimously that it was the appropriate policy for our country. three years later, after change in congressional control, the policy was once again approved, although was still not adequately funded. with regard to president obama's 2010 plan, i have yet to find a person in nasa, the defense department, the air force, the national academies industry, or act deem ya that had any knowledge of the plan prior to its announcement. rumors abound that neither the
nasa administrator nor the president of science technology advisor were knowledgeable about the plan. >> for this plan that is worrisome. america has invested substantially for more than half a century to acquire a position of leadership in space. but for any organization, the public utility, an airline, university, or an nfl team to maintain a leadership position requires steadfast determination and a continuing investment in the future. that investment must be made wisely. i believe that so far our national invest. in space -- investment in space and our sharing of that knowledge with the rest of the world has been made wisely and
has served us very well. america is respected for its contributions it has made in learning to sail on this new ocean. it's a leadership we have acquired through our investment is simply allowed to fade away, other nations will surely step in where we have faltered. i do not believe that would be in our best interests. i'm very concerned that the new plan, as i understand it, will prohibit us from having human access to orbit until the private arrow space industry is able to qualify their hardware under development as rated for human occupancy. i support the encouragement of newcomers toward their goal of lower cost access to space. but having cut my teeth in
rockets more than 50 years ago, i am not confident. the most experienced rocket engineers with whom i have spoken believe that it will require many years in substantial investment to reach the necessary level of safety and reliability. if these experts are correct, the united states will be limited to buying passage to the international space station from russia and will be prohibited from traveling to other destinations, such as the hubble telescope, or any of the frequently mentioned destinations that are out on the space frontier. >> as i examined the plan as stated during the announcement and the subsequent explanation, i finds the number of assertions, which are, at best, demand careful analysis, and at worst dork not deserve any analysis. i do believe if the national
space plan is subject to the normal review process of this congress, the air roe space industry and the reliable experts we know, america will be well served. >> thank you, mr. armstrong, very much. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i also want to thank you for inviting me today. to express my personal views concerning the administration's 2011 budget as it pertains to america's role in the future of human space exploration. one month ago, neil armstrong, jim lovell, and i released an opinion paper expressing our concern over the administration's proposed space budget. we spent a great deal of time writing and refining over and
over again this document, choosinging our words very carefully, words like devastating, slide to mediocrity, presumably because we did not want to be misunderstood nor misinterpreted. >> we particularly wanted to avoid any political overtones. since the beginning days of nasa, its support has come from traditionally bipartisan politics. it has transcended our political differences. we have recently heard a lot of eloquent verbage about the exploration of space, landing on an asteroid, circling mars, and someday maybe even landing on the red planet. there is talk about a decision yet to come about building a large booster which might ultimately someday almost take us to the far reaches of this
universe. there are, however, no details, no specific challenge and no commitment as to where or specifically when this exploration might come to pass. when one examines in detail the 2011 budget, nowhere can be found not one penny allocated to the support of space exploration. yes, there has been much rhetoric about transformative technology, heavy lift propulsion, research, robotic precurser missions. nowhere do we find any mention of human space exploration. nowhere do we find a commitment in dollars to support this national endeavor. neil, jim lovell and i have come to a unanimous conclusion that this budget proposal presents no
challenges, has no focus, and is, in fact, a blueprint for a mission to nowhere. in this proposed budget, we find several billions of dollars allocated to low earth orbit based upon the assumptions and claims by those competing for this elusive contract who say they can achieve this goal in little more than three years and they can do it for something less than $5 billion. based upon my personal experience and what i believe is possible, i believe it might take as much as a decade, a full decade, and the cost may be two to three times as much as they predict. although i strongly do support the goals and ideals of commercial access to space, the folks who proposed such a limited architecture do not yet know what they don't know. there is a myriad of technical
challenges to overcome safety considerations, which cannot be overlooked or compromised, as well as a business plan and investors they will have to satisfy. all this will lead to unplanned delays, which will cost the american taxpayer billions of unallocated dollars, and lengthen the gap from shuttle retirement to the day we can once again access low earth orbit, leaving us hostage as a nation to foreign powers for some indeterminate time in the future. this may be a sensitive point, because i'm going to mention a point about a dear friend, whom i have the ultimate respect for, charlie boldin. we did have a briefing last week. it was in that briefing that charlie expressed some concern over the potential of the commercial sector to be
successful in any reasonable length of time. he indicated we might have to subsidize them until they are successful. and i can say with authority, because i wrote this down, and i put the words "wow" right next to it, because charlie did it may be a bailout like g.m. and chrysler. as a matter of fact, it may be the largest bailout in history. the united states through nasa spent a half a century, mr. chairman, learning what we didn't know, finding answers to questions we weren't smart enough to ask at the time. developing technology that was needed to meet a challenge and get the job done. we came from the flight in 1961 to the space shuttle and the international space station today. by the way, with the side trip or two to the moon along the way. the evolution of this learning
process was not without cost. not just in dollars, but in the lives of our friends and our colleagues. it took the courage, the effort, the dedication and the self-sacrifice of thousands of americans out there who allowed us to come this far, this quickly. and although we paid dearly for our mistakes, it is testimonial to their commitment and american ingenuity that everyone who went to the moon came home. therein is a lesson we cannot afford to ignore, and i ask the question, is this the nasa we want to transform? for the sake of time, i will not go into my thoughts and concerns about game-changing technology without a goal, or the fact that we may or may not someday make a decision to build a hufe lift booster, or the fact that i have
major concerns about -- i went into detail in my written testimony. let me go back to constellation. it's gone through detailed review processes and been vetted by every government agency from the o.m.b. to the d.o.d. and certainly by nasa. by every agency that has any ownership interest in any technical, scientific budget or benefit that might be derived from human space exploration. in addition, an arsenal of the best engineers and scientists, many of them who were yours over the years, and management experts in america's aerospace community, the knowledge and expertise to the proposed constellation architecture before it ever became a program worthy of consideration. and appropriately, has been said already, under the law, both
houses of congress, overwhelmingly with bipartisan support, approved and agreed that con stelation should go forward. it is unknown how much time and thought was put into the existing budget proposal for 2011 or by whom this proposal was generated. but it is common knowledge that few, if any of those government agencies, referred to above were asked to participate. nor of significant note was the d.o.d. or the engineering or management expertise that exists throughout nasa today. this leads one to the conclusion that this proposal was most likely formulated in haste within the office of management and budget, and/or the o.m.b., with little or with no input by his own admission in previous testimony, the nasa administrator, or, i know for a
fact, by nasa senate directors or -- nasa center directors or management. the originators were quite likely promoting their own agenda rather than that of nasa and america's commitment to human space exploration. the program has never been an entitlement. it's an investment in the future, an investment in technology and jobs and world respect and leadership. perhaps, most importantly, in the inspiration and the education of our youth. mr. chairman, you asked how much of the budget was gone into education. that goes into paper work. the inspiration for our youth -- excuse me -- came when neil armstrong walked on the moon. it's a freebie that comes from space exploration. the best and the brightest minds at nasa and throughout the multitudes of the private contractors did not join the team to design windmills. but to live their dreams of once
again taking us where no man has gone before. in closing, mr. chairman, i would like to say america's human space flight program has for a half a century risen above part differents. from eisenhower to kennedy to the present day, the challenges and accomplishments of the past were those of a nation. never of a political party. nor were they of any individual agenda. those flags which fly today in those valleys on the moon are not blue flags and they're not red flags. they're american flags. if we abjew indicate our leadership in space today, not only is human space flying and exploration at risk, but i personally believe the future of this country and thus the future of our children and grandchildren as well. now is the time for wiser heads in congress of the united states to prevail. now is a time to overrule this
administration's pledge to mediocrity. now is a time to be bold, innovative, and wise in how we invest in the future of america. i want to thank you, mr. chairman, for allowing me to share with you my passion. and that quite simply is the future of our country. >> thank you, sir. mr. augustine? >> mr. chairman, members of the committee, i'd like to thank you for permitting me to speak and represent my colleagues on the human space flight plans program. i have a statement i would like to submit for the record. i should probably begin by saying that it would be very difficult to gather a group of four people who i admire more or treasure their friendship than the two gentlemen beside me and the two who appear before us. i think we all share at least one thing in common, and that is that we want a strong human
space flight exploration program for our nation. one might say, why? our panel tried to answer that. we said that certainly the science to be derived is not unimportant. the same can be said of economic impact, new products. the engineer achievements have been very significant indeed. while all of these things are important, it was the view of our committee taken by themselves that are not sufficient to justify the cost of the human exploration program. one has to justify that program, we think one can justify it based upon intangibles, and the fact that they're intangible makes them no less significant in our view. the human space flight program can blaze a path for humans to move into outer space. it inspires the young people in science and engineering.
we've seen so many of the science new jerseys today were inspired by the two gentlemen beside me and others like them. more importantly, i think it says to the world what the american people can accomplish with our system of government and our system of free enterprise. all this comes for a little less than a dime a day per citizen, which would seem to be a very great bargain. one can say a great deal can be done with robots, and that's certainly true, and should be. but there's certain things that robots can't do. one thing would be, for example, to make the first repair to the hubble telescope program. i can't imagine a robot that could have done that. similar sli, the intangibles. does anyone remember the first robot that stepped on the moon? launching a rocket to the top of everest with a flag in it is
quite different than climbing to the top of everest. that's what makes it so important to many of us. i was asked to make a few brief comments on some of the conclusions from the study i chaired 20 years ago on the space flight space program as a whole. some of the conclusions that perhaps relate to the issue of today. i would cite just five. the first time is that at that time 20 years ago, we concluded that nasa was being asked to accomplish grand goals and being given resources that didn't match those goals, and that was a very dangerous thing to do, particularly in space. second was reflecting our skepticism of the reliability calculations that were being done. we said it was very likely we would lose another shuttle. sadly, that proved to be the case. we said that the heavy lift vehicle was the most important project in the human space flight program, because it really is is the gateway to
outer space. if one thinks about it, the u.s. has not had an astronaut go more than 300 miles from the earth since my colleague here left it some years ago. we thought the strong technology program was being starved, that we didn't have a strong technology program 20 years ago, and we said that one of the consequences will be the future decision makers will have very few options. finally, we said we need a balanced space program, balanced in terms of human space flight, robotics, exploration of science, and so forth. the recent review of the human space flight program, i had the privilege of chairing. we had 10 members on our committee. our findings were unanimous, as reflected in the 150-some page report that you probably had a chance to read. the first question is why not just continue the con stelation
program? that certainly is the easy, logical answer. one could do that. when the constellation program was begun, what was now five years ago, four years from the time we did our study, nasa assumed the budget profile out for some 20 years, and in talking to the people who ran nasa at the time, they really believed, i think, that they had good reason to accept that budget profile. but be that as it may, they received each year only 2/3 of that amount. in other words, 1/3 reduction every year. the consequence coupled with technical problems that the programs have encountered is that during the four years that the program has been going, for example, it slipped somewhere between three and five years of schedules depending on whose numbers one chooses to accept. in addition, we were concerned about the goal of the program,
which was focused on going back to the moon, rather than something more aggressive, like eventually going to mars with some interesting intermediate stops. talking to people, many people, particularly young people, we found that when we said 20 years from now, we'll be going back to the moon, most of their response was, well, they did that 60 years ago. or they will have done it 60 years ago. that led us to be very concerned that our nation would not be able to maintain the financial support for a program that would require continuous support from five administrations, nine congresses, and 18 budget cycles. let me turn to the president's program very briefly, as it was modified in his remarks at cape kennedy a few weeks ago. that program fairly closely approximates one of our options, option 5-b. i should emphasize that we were
asked to provide options, not to provide recommendations so that we could try to be somewhat neutral in this discussion, and we're trying very hard to do that. the president's program, in our view, at least as reflected in option 5-b, they do differ somewhat. we consider it to be a viable program. and we rated it very highly in our overall assessment. we offered two very important caveats. the first is a vital part of that option is its funding profile. not just the next five years, but throughout the entire program. the second was the decisions truly be made on the schedule that they have been planned. i'm sorry to report to you, that we could find no interesting human space exploration program for somebody substantially below the enhanced budget level we
described, which adds about $3 billion a year to the current nasa budget. and that has to be inflated appropriately. the most important request i would make to this committee on behalf of my colleagues on the human space flight committee was that whatever program is approved, its goals match the budget. otherwise, i think we'll all be back here 10 years from now having this same discussion. i hope that america can have a strong human space flight program reflecting the title of our report, which was a human space flight program worthy of a great nation. thank you very much. >> thank you, mr. augustine, very much. i'm going to ask the first question. captain, you indicated that we
were potentially headed on a journey to nowhere. and i guess i have, in all honesty, to respond by saying that i am not a huge, but i am a substantial skeptic of human space flight. we're approximately the same generation, but that's where i am. i cannot support going into space as an end in and of itself. i agree with the president that we need a measured nationally, globally relevant and sustainable human space flight program. not one solely bound by place and time in space. but my mind is not closed. because i'm not an expert. i want to understand the value of human space flight.
but i bring one other dimension to it. i want to understand human space flight -- i'm asking this of any of you, not all three of you, but any of you. that it not just be the matter of space flight, but that it also relate to the human condition not only in the worlding but also in our own country. i think nasa was conceived brilliantly with the idea of simply doing something that had never been done before. and we've done it now. a number of times. and i don't mean to say by that that we should stop doing it. but i do think we have to stop doing things exactly the same way. i mean, nasa for a number of years has received a lot of
criticism over how it's run its -- managed its programs. various analysts have worried about overexpenditures, things of that sort. so i want to understand the value of human space flight. so i want one of you to tell me how nasa's human space flight programs advance the agency's overall mission. today and in the future. and i also want you to explain how human space flight, in that it's in a context of other priorities for nasa, helps the human condition sufficiently to
its budget in america. >> you're asking for a lot. i will do my best, and i'll certainly let my colleagues here help me if they would like. if you want to talk about technology, if you want to -- technology which you have in your hands today, the technology that communicate around the world, the technology of communications itself, the technology that i have in my iphone today is technology that was given birth to 30, 40, 50 years ago. .
with birth will look like in 1 billion years? i don't know. i don't have the answers. i don't know what is over the hill and around the corner, but i want to find out. it is when our hearts and souls and desires find out and seek out, yes, we have not been there, but there is a bottom to the ocean. you could walk to the top of the highest mountain on this plan at -- on this planet, and could walk to the depths of the ocean, but you are still on earth. there is a difference between the frontier of space, to seek knowledge. it was their life on mars, is their life? i know there has to be other reasons, that alone is not enough, but that is one of the driving things. it is our destiny, i believe, to explore the unknown.
god knows for every answer we get, we will come up with a dozen more questions. it has been that way all along. we have more questions about the moon now than we did before we went there. so i am probably not being as explicit as you would like me to be, but for the benefits to humans on this planet, whether it is communication satellites, weather satellites, predicting storms, on and on, those things were given birth to win kennedy said we will go to the moon. he was asking us to do the impossible. he was asking us to do what most people did not think could be done. we did not have the technology to do it. that technology is obsolete today in one sense, but american industry and ingenuity has built upon that. so that we have today what we have, our cars, airplanes,
trucks. every walk of life. i turn it over to neal. il. >> i can't, i am overrun by time. senator hutchinson? >> i would just add to what capt. cernan said it and say, it is it an improvement of our life on earth that we can put a satellite-guided missile into a window from 3 miles out, and instead of killing 500 civilians, you kill the enemy that you are seeking? is that an improvement? because that is what has happened because we have explored in space. let me talk about the future. the nobel laureate from mit talks about what we could do in the space station in the future to study cosmic rays, which are most intense in space, not on
eartrth. it as potentially a future source of energy production. that is the kind of science. but we're not talking about just going into space just to go into space. i think that is valid and i think you have asked a valid question. if that were all we were doing, i would not be pushing this. i am pushing it because if we continue our priorities and space, we will be the ones who can capture the cosmic rays and have the renewable energy sources that will keep us from having to drill for oil and gas and go to the renewable energy of the future. that is why we're doing this. is the future and we want to do it, rather than having others do it, so we harness them. i want to ask the question, because i want to go to something that dr. cernan said
in his testimony that he did not use. because there were so many other things that you did say. that is talking about putting all of the money into private contractors, but having nasa take the step back, rather than being an nasa project but private contractors. you said that we assume that this goal says that these private contractors that are not yet tested, and a little more than three years, for less than $5 billion, could put people into low earth orbit in a new vehicle. it assumes that the design, build, flight test, and develop a man-made spacecraft and booster of architecture along with the infrastructure required, including redesigning the requirements of mission control, developing support and training estimate -- training simulators, technical animals --
technical manuals and on board procedures. these are just a few of the developments of the support requirements to put a new man system into space. basically, what you went on to say is that you predict it will be 10 years, not three, for the private sector to do this, and at a cost which possibly could mean bailing out the companies because we cannot really do all of that under $5 billion. my question is, do you think that money ought to be spat with nasa -- all to be spent with nasa redoing their plan so that they are in control, but not just with blinders on as it seems they were saying -- within my budget, i could do this. how about being more creative? how about not doing just constellation but a new
configuration of constellation? ? an orion that is not just a return vehicle but one that can take people into space as well and put our money not into termination contracts at $2.5 billion, not into programs that try to help people who will lose their jobs, not renting space on soyuz, but developing our own techniques so we can this advantage. would that be what you were proposing, captain cernan, in your statement? >> i think you asked at first about all the infrastructure that is needed to support the commercial sector, which is one of the reasons why i think the cost will go way up, as well as the time. the aerospace corp. did a report that said it would take
probably 10-$12 billion to support the commercial sector, and it does not count the infrastructure, the simulators, the mission reconfiguration, air sea rescue. all of the procedures, everything that you have to develop. a lot of people think we played handball, and when it came time to fly into space we jumped into the spacecraft and went to the noon -- the moon. we spent years and years, out there 24/7, whatever number of years it took to get the spacecraft we were on to fly, develop property, and say we had confidence in. how and when will that be prepared for and what is the commercial sector going to do.
is this going to be a program that nasa will pay for, that somebody else is going to run? will they respond to the regulatory requirements? these are things that have not been addressed, properly. i do not believe that you have been looking at this. when you ask is where i would go, and my opinion, this is probably not worth much these days -- but i am concerned about the disconnect. and in the long term, i am concerned about exploration. going where no man has gone before. going and doing what others were afraid to do. this is exploration. in the near term, i know how you feel about shuttle extension. i think that we should close this from the front end. we have to have something that
will close the gap in the back end. we have called these areas in in, and we should get them running, and said of the potential gap of one decade, this may be three or four or five years. at least we will be able -- and we will tell the rest of the world that we will not be slaves to what they say -- we will not be slaves to what they say that we can do. we are going to get that from here. as we are in the process of doing this, if you want to redesign the long-term exploration objectives, to build
a new booster, or whenever this will take, this is the time to do it. >> thank you very much. >> mr. chairman, i am wanting to answer your question. this is a good question. and i want to thank you for the personal attention that you have given to this hearing. being right here, the entire time. i am profoundly grateful to this. my answer to your question, what about space? my answer is because we, as americans, are by nature, explorers. we have always had a frontier, and when this nation was developed, we had visionary leaders like thomas jefferson. and they paid, initially, $2,000 for lewis and clark to go westward.
this ended up costing the extraordinary sum of $36,000. but this was filling -- by nature, we are explorers. if we ever give up that characteristic, we will be a second-rate nation. this is no longer westward, this is up. and as he was talking about -- we are inquisitive and curious. look at what the telescope has done. this is going back to the history of the universe. we will be able to go back to the origin of the universe. is this valuable to us, as an
inquisitive people? and as citizens of planet earth? i believe that this and ask a question of dr. augustine? dr. augustine, this goes without saying. thank you for your steady hand, i have heard about the strong opinions by these american heroes. the committee that you are had it -- you are in charge of was across the entire spectrum of aerospace. and this included the military as well. and this included some astronauts. can you describe how this administration and their plan,
and you can say how this has been amended, as the president changed this at the kennedy space center. >> i would be happy about this. we narrowed this to five main offices, with a few subsets. and i mentioned this option, this is different from what they have proposed. there are two significant differences. they have the heavy-lift launch vehicle, right away, rather than waiting a few years. we had a funding profile, over four years, with $3 billion per
year. and this goes beyond that with the aerospace -- and so the funding profile was substantially greater than what we would be offered last year. we could not find a good answer with the profile. and we have -- they have the launch vehicle, and we have the time for more technology. this helps with the early budget pressure. and we have the five assists at the same time. and you lose time, and the
biggest risk is when the five years come through, this would be a tragedy in my opinion. this may be the biggest risk. the option that we were looking at, this goes to the president's program. i have not seen the out-year funding. i cannot testify to this. this is fully funded, and i felt that this was a rather exciting program, rather than wait 15 years to get on the moon, they accomplish the objective that you could talk about, you could go on an asteroid and you may move one a little bit. you can go conduct refueling operations, with maintenance on the telescope. you can navigate mars. and you can orbit mars, you can land on one of the moons of mars. deimos or phobos. and you can have robots on mars
which will overcome this, because this takes 40 minutes to give the signal back and forth, from here to mars. this offers all of those advantages. and then, this brings me to two other aspects -- we did this to shut down the shuttle. the gap was created five years ago. if you want to avoid the gap, the only way that i know about this -- we depend upon the russians to orbit. the idea is that this will be a seven-year gap, and out of five-year gap. as you continue to operate the shuttle, you should avoid much of the gap, because they will
consume all the money that you will use, for the constellation on earth. this goes back to all the money that you have available. if you have the heavy-lift launch vehicle, this is that much that you have left to improve. and the one thing that is always a problem is that they had $3 million per year. -- $3 billion. i do not know what this is like in the environment. >> i want to make one final statement. >> i have to do this. >> i have a speech, 10 minutes ago. what he indicated, with the word, exploration, i agree. this is the nature of what
america has always been. what i think is also worth considering and why ask my question to the captain, how human space flight is going to contribute to the condition of humankind on this earth, there was another dimension to this. there are different forms of exploration. one of them is doing the undoable, the most exploration since lewis and clark. and you gentlemen, when you have done with this across the world. the heart of the world was stopping. this was also stopping, but it was unnoticed, in 1878. this is when sir isaac newton came to open a new medical
university, and this was called john hopkins. he had said that in the 2000 years previous to this day, there had been no advances in medicine, at all. and during the civil war, and the other words that -- often, the diseases would come from outside, into the body, which is why this was constantly applied to the wounds, but not necessarily, the diseases came from inside the body. there was no federal funding for research. he is doing this 125 years ago. there were no requirements, and harvard had medical, they all
have medical schools. he did not even have to have a high-school diploma to get the medical school. much less a college degree. and they took you and they would teach you nothing. what john hopkins did, when sir isaac newton said that you follow the truth, wherever this will take you, in medicine. there will be no compromise on that. you will do what you have to do to follow the truth, in science and in medicine. and as a result of this, literally, the medical education in the united states has been completely changed. and we all understand this. this is also -- this is not space flight.
this is doing what cannot be done, finding out what cannot be known, and challenging, with no federal resources, that private foundations had to be part of helping medical research, and -- you can read all -- you can read about this in a book about the great influenza epidemic of 1918. and this will tell you all about it. i just want to say, not to offer a rebuttals for anything that has been said. exploration is a broad word. the american search for newness, it finds many outlets. most of them are quite glorious. but not all of them. i thank you. and he will continue to share the hearing. >> sen. brownback?
>> this is a great discussion and we should have hearings like this all the time. why should we not do what he suggested, to stop the shuttle, and use this money to move forward with consolation? we have spent $9 billion in constellation. this is one thing that drives me crazy. we will go somewhere else. this drives everyone crazy. you know that this was under- funded by one-third. so why not go the route that was suggested, as a way to move forward with constellation. >> this is a great question, and we spoke about this early on. i have read more articles that -- then i would like to admit
about not starting and stopping program. if you will start them, finish them, unless there is a compelling reason that you should stop. and we believe that this is a very compelling reason. this is terry tragic, to have to write off $9 billion, were part of this. but this is the cost that contributes heavily to the launch vehicle that sometime in the future. the real issue comes out of the fact that when the program was started, the area is at issue. the constellation program -- this has four parts. we have the capsule, and the lunar lander and the -- the habitat on the moon. the first to could not be
started because the other 28 up all the money. one part of this is in, which i understand -- most of this will continue on. this is the area that is an issue. this was issued in 2005. there were two primary mission. one of them was to support the international space station. and the second was to -- the second was to be a part of the space exploration program, 15 years from now. this will provide technology for the heavy-lift version of this. and the problem is, what immediately happened, and with the committee believes his five years, by the time that this is developed, at least on the plan that was being developed, the
international space station is going to be in the ocean. and if you add -- five years to the loss of the international space station, by the time that this is developed, they will have two years to support the international space station, and subsequent to that, a 15- year hiatus, where this will be the most expensive way of the world to put people in lower orbit, where this will be useful again for the exploration program, but we will have down time. the program made sense when this began. and today, this is not a bad program. the issue is not can we do this, but should we do this. >> and you do not believe that
we should do this? >> i am trying hard not to choose sides. this was one of the most attractive as it -- most unattractive as this was laid out. >> in taking his comments, and we do not seem to have a plan right now. we do not have -- we have a lot of ideas but there is no plan. and i would agree with the low- earth orbit, that we should have a commercial sector, and i want to have a plan to continue. and this is putting off for five years. and usually, the budget -- the budgetary numbers are such that if she took the shuttle money, you cannot get there with the plan that we were on, and so you are just better off going somewhere else. >> the budget that was submitted to us, there was really no way with the costs -- we talked about this. we will conduct the human exploration program that would be meaningful, to say this at all.
>> i would hope that this is the beginning of the discussion, and we have some good thoughts that are laid out here. we are getting some elbow grease on this and digging in, as we move forward to these things. i thank you for your service. you are great american hero and i appreciate your willingness to come back to continue to fight for the exploration that you have started. and giving us the exploration, and you do not give up. this is worth a huge amount, even if you do not measure this. this is the intangible but is worth a lot of money for us to do. and for the future generations. >> hutchinson? >> i was wanting to say that, i have heard of a budget as the
reason for why we cannot keep the shuttle flying, to close the gap. if we are talking about putting $6 billion into a private sector company, some of these are not developed just yet, and these are not tested. if they do not make their budgets, having to bail them out. i am asking about the best plan and determining the priority so that we stay within the budget. so this is not only one way of doing this, and determining the right plan to get us where i think all of our goals are. and that is to be able to use the space station, for exploration and to make certain that we are getting the scientific products that we have already invested $100 billion in. and if we let the space shuttle and space station -- if this is in jeopardy of being useful, but not having the backup system, that we control.
i do not know if this is good budgeting. i have a problem with what i am hearing, and the lack of creativity with what we do in this budget, that i saw in the first panel. i would like to ask mr. armstrong, on the safety issue, in your written statement, we talk about the taxi service that we saw -- this was being,
perhaps, not necessarily the safety standards that we would have on our own shuttle. can you talk about the safety issue? >> the prime recommendations of the columbia accident investigation board, with respect to the new vehicles in the future, was that safety should be considered the prime consideration. and who will argue with safety. but safety -- you cannot put all the money into safety. this has to be balanced with the program requirements and others. except level of safety has to be determined. this is what you are searching
for. and we had good confidence on this right now. we had a number of safelights, and ever since the columbia -- this seems to be operating very well. this is an old, 30-year-old technology. i believe that this may continue to be operated safely, and we have a good confidence level on this. this was projected -- by the outside safety experts. this is a few times better than the competitors, including the aries-5. they did not have enough
information on those configurations, to project an accurate safety value. >> taking this -- the capability that we have is the safety over the long term. we have the capability to discern this -- we have the commercial vehicles, the thing that safety would be at a disadvantage with the shuttle and the new space craft that has not been tested yet.
do you have any concerns about this. you have this for the 7-10-year time, suggesting the real-time change for the gap. >> it is hard to project this answer, if the commercial vehicles have this in the flight environment. this is the more carefully- configured and described. i think that this is a safe vehicle to return on. i think that the shuttle would
continue to be used, and we could defend on this. this may take double the of extra commitment. the key to that is right here, and we have the recommendation that this safety-first. the commercial vehicles -- i just do not know about safety considerations, it is certainly -- these are good. i just do not know. >> in the testimony, you talk about orion oight, which will bring people -- orion light, which will bring people back and does not have the capability to go to the other were bits. do you believe that this is the
best use of the budget constraints, to have them with the limited capability as opposed to putting the same money into an orion, all the way, that would be able to do the things that the president said were his goals? and i believe are quite exciting? going into orbit around mars, or the other destinations besides the space station? >> i do not believe that this would be the good use, with the funds in the budget.
this would be an expert -- and expensive vehicle to test, and this would not be able to service the space station very long. this is probably not very good. this is for the most serious of emergencies, like the medical emergencies with the instant departure from the space station, to return to earth. this is because of the configuration of the orion vehicle. this has bad error-dynamic performance. and this cannot change the destination to rise more quickly. this is going to come down on ocean or on the land. we have this immediately upon the departure. >> may i have a moment? we are having the contact. the redundancy for the right, that puzzles me, is the fact that they use this on land,
they use this with their own lending facility. when they land on the runway, we have the ballistics and less capable spacecraft. we have the recovery forces, not the cost of having a vehicle with people inside before you can add -- i use this generically, before you bring people home safely, you have to be ready, to start with. and you have to have the recovery forces standing by,
somewhere, within reach, somewhere, that will have to recover the spacecraft. this is something that no one recognizes or acknowledges. they will have the capabilities of the one that we really need. we talk about the budget and the cost of everything. this was a little bit more than half penny of the money that we send it to pay for space. the space station, the hubble telescope, the opportunity for exploration on mars, i am not certain that if we put a box on this, we would not be able to afford everything that we want to do.
>> i think that people would believe that the investment that we would make, this would make the quality of the health and what people can get right now, the magnetic imaging has transformed health care. we have the space exploration and everything -- everything like this. we have to make certain that we do not lose this advantage. we have the quality of life in the world, and we will be voting. we will close my part, and thank you very much for coming. and thank you for being so direct, especially. we have to speak out, to try to come together. i think that general bolten, he will try to work with us to try
to come together with the right approach for america and our future. we see this for the scientific productivity that we hope to encourage our children to pursue. >> did your commission determined that aries would be much safer when the existing shuttle, and was this by a factor of 10. >> i find myself in this situation, we have this in the hardware and we are very skeptical about the reliability of these models. most of the failures that we have, i would be reluctant to
make a comparison. we have the reliability in line, i would have that in this regard. how would like to say this about the issues with this situation. one thing is that nasa was in the plan that has been put forward. they would have responsibility to oversee safety and reliability for the commercial launchers, part of this was their responsibility to oversee this. we talk about the commercial launch companies, the big companies and the old companies, they can offer this and in the
case of one of them, one of the larger companies as a vehicle -- hit -- has a vehicle with a 90% success rate. i would like to put things in perspective. we think that this is a big change for the industry, for the release safe launch vehicle. i do not want to understate -- understood the vehicle of this. there is a risk everywhere in space. we have the best of technology over time.
and how much the industry must have a graph -- who must have progressed since these gentleman went to the moon. this happened during the same time that we are at the moon until we return to the moon, this was the plan that was previously in place. this is kind of an interesting perspective. and this is disappointing. >> mr. armstrong, you made the case in your statement, and we will place in the record his prepared testimony, and this will be part of the record. you have said that we should go back to the moon. and i would like for you to tell us why you believe that returning to the surface of the moon is important, as opposed to flying by the moon or going to other places as we ultimately have the destination to go to mars.
>> thank you, mr. chairman. i believe that there is value at returning to the moon. we know 1000 times more about the moon thin before apollo ever left. there is still so much of it that is undiscovered, not ventured upon. there may be valuable minerals or other materials on the lunar surface that can be used at such time as when permanent settlements are made their. it is worthwhile knowing about those things. so i think there is value in going to the surface. nevertheless, there is also
value in using the moon as a location from which you do other activities, go to rendezvous points or other positions at lunar distance that can be reached easily by communication, with only one and a half seconds time lag, and allows mission control to be continuing to be involved in the efficiency of the operation, and we can learn it and weep lunar region's many of the things that are still unknown or undeveloped in our current state of knowledge about interplanetary space travel, a particularly things like radiation protection and so on, where we have the possibility to get out of real trouble when we get in it
because we are so close to home and back to worse. that is a possibility that we will not have once we find ourselves months away from earth. consequently, there is great value in continuing to include it the moon as an integral part of the space exploration program as we go forward. >> ok, and i will just close by saying that mr. augustine said they have the liberated this on the panel, and they pointed out that one of the things that you have to sustain is the support from the american people. and what the chairman wanted to do was to get that excitement returned. there was a legitimate question raised. can you get that by going back to the moon? perhaps you can, if we know what
eastern on c-span. >> supreme court nominee a land taken is meeting with senators in advance of her confirmation hearing. learn more in c-span possibly this book, "the supreme court." candid conversations with all the justices providing unique insight about the court, available now in hard cover and also as an e-book. >> now interior secretary ken salazar on the gulf of mexico oil spill. joining him is the ceo of bp on the company's late strategy to contain the leak. this is 20 minutes. >> thank you very much. i wanted to make a statement that the president has directed. we shall not rest, we shall not take a day off until we get this
problem resolved. >> we have been on this problem for 25 days. there are many different fronts on this battle. we are fighting them on all fronts. we are resolute in our effort to do everything we can to bring this problem under control. tomorrow, in the afternoon, with secretary chu, we will be pulling together. along with the department of energy and the united states geological survey, all of whom have been focused on this issue with the command center in houston, it gives us hope that we will be able to make sure that whatever options chosen to kill the swell will in fact work. we're looking ford to having that done tomorrow. today, i was in louisiana, fort
jackson, the wildlife rehabilitation center. i wanted to see the wildlife resources. the department of interior has 33 wildlife refuges. we have a responsibility to make sure that we're doing everything we can to protect the valuable ecological resources of the gulf coast. we will continue to do everything we can, using every ounce of effort that we have in the department of the interior on this issue. we are part of the federal family and we are proud of the fact that secretary napolitano and admiral alan and so many federal faculty have come together.
we feel the pain. we are frustrated. we want to make sure that, at the end of the day, no stone is left unturned on this matter. admiral? >> thank you, secretary salazar appeared on behalf of everyone at the this command post, we thank you for your leadership. we have felt the support since day one. we thank you for the leadership and the hard work that is going on at the national level. we understand the tremendous work that is going on here and the communities that are the front line, those that are affected.
it has been a real team effort. we have had good weather. we have had weather that has allowed us to fight this offshore. we are very focused on securing the store. as we fight this offshore, we have had good success until now have a minimal impact to the shoreline and the beaches and the wildlife. but there are fishermen who are out of work right now.
our commitment is to mitigate the environmental impact. we want to thank everyone for their efforts in analyzing the three tests that we did prior to this decision. we did not cross the structural likely to employ this tool. it will be analyzed and monitored. it has a very strict monitoring protocol in place. we have other tools as well. obviously, there are controlled burns and skimming on the surface. i want to thank the administrative epa who engaged the committee before we crossed of this threshold. they had a wonderful dialogue and made themselves available so that we could allay concerns that this is not something we stepped into lightly. i also want to mention the fisheries services. they are really trying to mitigate and minimize the impact from the three recreational and commercial fishermen and they're trying to do the best they can to see what is out
there. we will keep you apprised of that. we're very committed to coming to a conclusion on this and bringing this to resolution. we will not rest because we know how much the american people and the south coast residents rely on us to bring this to closure. thank you. >> thank you, secretary salazar and admiral landry. i spent 1 1/2 hours flying over the scene. it appears that the application of the subsea dispersal is working.
the oil in the immediate vicinity of the well and the ships and raise working together have diminished from previous observations -- and rigs are working together and have diminished from previous observations. we are 23 days since the release began. we have had very little impact to shore, partly due to our efforts and partly due to mother nature. we are in the process of running the riser in assertion to the. this is the method to contain the flow. if it does not stop the flow, but it contains the flow. the relief activity continues. the drilling of the first relief well is on day 3. we should resume drilling over the next two days. the ddt 2 well should resume